FOLLOWUP: Construction delayed on Andover pedestrian/bike overpass

(August reader photo, sent by Darin)

Back when SDOT closed the Andover pedestrian/bicycle bridge over the west end of the West Seattle Bridge two months ago, citing community-safety concerns among other things, they noted that the bridge would be closing soon for its seismic retrofit anyway. That construction was expected to start in September. So, now that September’s over, we wondered why the project hadn’t started yet. The reply from SDOT spokesperson Ethan Bergerson:

We will start construction as soon as we receive the necessary materials. We ordered the equipment but still have not been given an exact delivery estimate from our supplier. Unfortunately, the kinds of transportation equipment and building materials necessary for this project have been subject to the same global supply chain issues which have affected many different kinds of industries. Once we know a target date of when construction will start, we will let you know.

Once that $1.9 million project starts, it’s expected to last about three months.

12 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: Construction delayed on Andover pedestrian/bike overpass"

  • D October 5, 2021 (1:01 pm)

    This does not bode well for repair of the West Seattle Bridge…

  • Jay October 5, 2021 (1:12 pm)

    I still use it several times a week and will continue to do so. SDOT’s responses to my emails were incredibly disrespectful and condescending. I reached out to them together with Lisa Herbold’s office in a three way conversation. SDOT wouldn’t provide a legitimate reason for the closure, it’s a “because we said so” thing. I get the feeling there’s some ego and power tripping at work. It’s very concerning behavior from the people responsible for our infrastructure, especially around decisions like this that had a large negative impact on the community while a compromise would have zero negative impact on their project. This isn’t okay.

    • Jon Wright October 5, 2021 (11:29 pm)

      Allegedly Seattle Police Department influenced the decision to close it.

  • Third Generation October 5, 2021 (1:22 pm)

     Why not close it once they had ALL materials ready to go?!  Lazy ass city!  Commuters could use it until then if the City had done their homework.

  • Wseattleite October 5, 2021 (1:30 pm)

    Perhaps they can open the bridge for the locals to use until such time as they have a clue about when they can start the project?  Asking for a friend. 

  • Al King October 5, 2021 (1:43 pm)

    D. My thoughts too………..Anybody believe SDOT will be straight with us?????

  • Derrick October 5, 2021 (1:56 pm)

    why not wait to close the pedestrian bridge until they are actually starting? Makes no sense to leave it closed but not being worked on. 

  • Jon Wright October 5, 2021 (5:35 pm)

    “Citing community-safety concerns” makes it sound as if SDOT closed the overpass in response to public requests as opposed to what really happened: SDOT closed the overpass despite public opposition.

  • HarborIslandworker October 5, 2021 (7:18 pm)

    Oh the Seattle Department of transportation and their  bridges…. I really do feel for you all… but maybe now some of you will understand what it feels like for someone that works on Harbor Island and lives in West Seattle… just take a detour route

  • Joe Z October 6, 2021 (7:39 am)

    The bridge was never closed for more than a day. Someone chucked the “bridge closed” signs into the bushes (where they belong) and things went back to normal. 

  • Jay October 6, 2021 (12:02 pm)

    Here is the email I received from SDOT:

    Hi, Jay, Thanks for reaching back out about the pedestrian bridge closure. We realize this bridge is important to you and that this closure is frustrating to you and your neighbors. Our plan is to reopen the pedestrian bridge when the seismic retrofit project is done – the current schedule assumes at least three months of construction there once it gets going next month. The West Seattle Bridge is on track to reopen mid-2022. We closed the pedestrian bridge because there was illegal activity on the Andover Bridge and trespassing onto the West Seattle High-Rise Bridge (high bridge). When our teams investigated, we identified that closing the Andover Bridge was the most effective way to address these concerns, in part because we already had a planned closure for the seismic retrofit construction that will begin in September. We’re also evaluating other long-term options such as fencing, gates, and other security measures to prevent people from illegal activity on the pedestrian bridge and trespassing onto the high bridge.

    /// Here is the previous message I had sent: It appears that SDOT is taking a hard stance that the bridge will remain closed for the reason of preventing trespassing and neighborhood disturbances. The problem with this reason is that the condition resulting in the closure of the Andover bridge will not be resolved with either the completion of the seismic mitigation project or the completion of West Seattle Bridge repairs. After seismic mitigation, people will still be able to walk onto the West Seattle Bridge or hang out late at night. After the West Seattle Bridge repairs, people will still be able to walk onto the West Seattle Bridge or hang out late at night. Because the conditions for the closure of the bridge will not be resolved by current projects, I’m seeing this as an indefinite, permanent, or recurring closure. If this is not going to be a long-term closure, it seems like the bridge wouldn’t be closed today. If this is a short-term closure but the bridge will be reopened after seismic mitigation with unchanged conditions around trespassing and disturbances, then why is it closed today? Can you reassure myself and other members of the community that we will retain access to this bridge in the future by clearly defining conditions for opening and closure or the bridge?

    • Wseattleite October 6, 2021 (7:16 pm)

      Very good question and reasoning Jay.  A terrible response that does not even address your questions.  Wish I could say I was surprised.  

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